Express Care

I have written a lot about Care ever since I started this blog and it seems the situation isn’t getting any better.    In fact it is becoming a lot worse.

(Two of my earlier blogs are worth reading :- “Cowardly Inaction” and “Social Care Straws in the Wind”, you can find them by clicking on ‘Care funding’ in the Topics List)

A recent survey carried out by the trade union, Unison,  asked 1,000 domicillary care workers about their pay and working conditions.  Although obviously not impartial it would be all too easy to dismiss their concerns.    Their answers help explain the shameful state of much of the state funded domicillary care provision. 

  • 75% said they heave unto compromise Care because they are too rushed.
  • 89% had no time to chat even though the client might be alone for the rest of the day.
  • 63% get only 15 minutes for a visit to assist with meals, showers, dressing, etc.
  • 63% are not paid for travel time between visits.
  • 71% are paid less than the minimum wage £8.45/ hour outside London,
  • 91% are paid less than £9.75 the minimum wage in London.52% are on zero hours contracts.

Reading between the lines of this survey, you can understand why so much domicillary care is below standard.    If care workers are not paid for travel time between visits and are only paid for ‘ hands on care time’, they could be working for many more hours than they are being paid.    In turn this means they will be paid significantly less than the minimum wage and lose out in terms of holiday and sick pay.    It is hardly surprising that care is rushed, standards are poor and staff turnover is high.

Sometime ago the Government “outlawed” 15 minute visits but they didn’t really mean it.   They didn’t sufficiently fund Social Services to implement it, so the system continues.     Local Authority spending on adult social care is down 11% between 2009/2011 and 2015/2016.

Care in the community although preferred by older people is all too often a sad illusion.    Ultimately, it is politicians who are the employers who allow these conditions to persist.

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2 Responses to Express Care

  1. david w freeman says:

    frightening reading, when basically most care workers try to earn an honest living, and the essential recompense is a smile for a job well done, with a word of thanks. Time is of the essence to the provider of the care service, as time is money. If one considerers just for a moment people-elderly at that seeing the carers around the place on a regular basis, whether recieving support or not from them, then is is not beyond the human mind to associate these frequent faces with respect, and part of the community: Then as we/us may live in a retirement village of some 300+ individuals, these cares have less to travel overall, may become more efficient [Depending on management controls]: However more importantly they slowly blend into this retirement village community, and become not just carers but friends, and very neighbourly, as the resident on support, and that frequently met resident as they go too and fro about their tasks inform them, or enquire of them about residential neighbours.
    Here the tasks is respect and confidentiallity, but as an older person one life becomes more open as one requires more support, and here it is the job of work of the management team, to maintain a personal interest in how each resident is reacting to support, but to also ensure that red line of indepence of financial support and dignity is maintained, outside the caring and social well being actionss of the individual care/support worker, who has too and needs to intergrate with the whole of that retirement village community- No man or woman is an Island????

  2. davidwfreeman237 says:

    frightening reading, when basically most care workers try to earn an honest living, and the essential recompense is a smile for a job well done, with a word of thanks. Time is of the essence to the provider of the care service, as time is money. If one considerers just for a moment people-elderly at that seeing the carers around the place on a regular basis, whether recieving support or not from them, then is is not beyond the human mind to associate these frequent faces with respect, and part of the community: Then as we/us may live in a retirement village of some 300+ individuals, these cares have less to travel overall, may become more efficient [Depending on management controls]: However more importantly they slowly blend into this retirement village community, and become not just carers but friends, and very neighbourly, as the resident on support, and that frequently met resident as they go too and fro about their tasks inform them, or enquire of them about residential neighbours.
    Here the tasks is respect and confidentiallity, but as an older person one life becomes more open as one requires more support, and here it is the job of work of the management team, to maintain a personal interest in how each resident is reacting to support, but to also ensure that red line of indepence of financial support and dignity is maintained, outside the caring and social well being actionss of the individual care/support worker, who has too and needs to intergrate with the whole of that retirement village community- No man or woman is an Island????

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